Mother Shipton’s Cave

Mother Shipton's Cave well


Mother Shipton’s is a beloved Knaresborough landmark and England’s oldest visitor attraction, open since 1630. This popular visitor attraction tells the story of Mother Shipton and the Petrifying Well.

Historic Woodland Walk

A picturesque mile-long walk along the River Nidd features the cave where famous Yorkshire prophetess Mother Shipton was born. It is situated next to the Petrifying Well, a unique geological phenomenon. Over hundreds of years, curiosity has drawn millions of visitors to the well to see cascading water turn everyday objects to stone – as if by magic.

People around the world visit Mother Shipton’s park, a remnant of the Royal Forest of Knaresborough with some of the oldest, tallest beech trees in the country.

Who was Mother Shipton?

Mother Shipton was born in a cave in 1488 and grew up around Knaresborough. As she grew older, her prophecies became known throughout England. She foretold the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588 and the Great Fire of London in 1666. She made her living telling the future and warning those who asked of what was to come.

Mother Shipton's Cave

Fun for all the Family

Great for all ages, there’s fun for families in the adventure playground, scenic picnic areas, interactive trails during events, and petrified objects displayed in the museum and gift shop. Dogs are welcome in all areas, apart from the playground. Areas of the park have restricted access, for more detail read our accessibility information.


The attraction is open at weekends in March (weather permitting) and every day from 1st April to 5th November.

It then reopens on selected dates throughout November and December in time for Christmas events.

Accessibility document here.


Mother Shipton’s Cave, Cave Prophecy Lodge, High Bridge, Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, HG5 8DD
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